Why won’t my laptop’s in-built webcam work any more?

Chris Cook January 10, 2013

I have a Gateway NV59. The webcam stopped working for no reason. It said “Camera not installed or is being occupied by another user”. I do not have any other user accounts. I have restarted the computer and have done updates but still no results. I tried doing some research for this problem and now I can not find the web cam in my devices.

It is a built-in cam so I am lost on what my next step is. Does any one have a solution that would like to share?

  1. Brian Howard
    January 13, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    It's not uncommon for a built-in webcam to fail. Laptops take a lot of abuse and since most cameras are in the lid they take more abuse than the other parts. It might really be just broken even if you don't see anything physically wrong with it. If other suggestions offered to you here fail then you might want to consider this as an option.

  2. Silhoutte james
    January 11, 2013 at 12:51 pm


    1. Were there any changes made prior to this issue?

    Reinstall webcam drivers and check if that helps.

    a. Click start and type Device Manager in the Search bar and hit enter.

    b. In Device Manager, locate the device, and then right-click the device name.

    c. Select uninstall and restart the computer.

    d. Let Windows 7 detect the device and install the drivers by itself.

    e. If that does not help, install the latest drivers from the manufacturer’s website


  3. Ahmed Musani
    January 11, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    install the driver through the CD provided or from the manifacturers website. if this doent work update or troubleshoot to help fix problems.

  4. Jim Chambers
    January 11, 2013 at 2:35 am

    The wiring from camera to motherboard may have failed where it goes through the display hinge. Replace it with an inexpensive USB webcam.

  5. ha14
    January 10, 2013 at 10:52 pm

    check if the cable of the webcam is connected

  6. Yiz Borol
    January 10, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    It could be you have a program running your computer that is using the webcam and you just don't know it. Have you installed any programs lately? not only that, scan your computer for viruses and malware, it could be some virus that has hijacked your webcam (scary as that sounds).

    If the above doesn't work, find the driver on your OEM's support website, download it.
    Then find the webcam in your Device Manger (in your control panel) uninstall the driver, then install the driver you downloaded from your OEm's website.

    • Chris Cook
      January 10, 2013 at 11:05 pm

      I have downloaded the driver from Gatway's wed site but it did not work. I still can not find the camera in device manager. I have also uploaded Trend Micro from a friend's account. It only found and resolved one threat.

      • Yiz Borol
        January 11, 2013 at 11:12 am

        What program are you using to access the camera?

  7. Oron Joffe
    January 10, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    I think the next step would be to reinstall the webcam driver. You should be able to download this from the gateway website (google "gateway support" for address), install it, reboot and try again. BTW, make sure when you restart that the machine is reboots, rather than just goes into hibernation & then "wakes up" again.

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